How do children learn the alphabet? By singing it.
How do they learn the value and importance of respect and diversity? Is there a song for that?
There can be. RAINBOW QUEST! songwriting workshops are made possible through your tax-deductible donations to sponsor them. In better times most schools allocated funding to provide artists-in-residence programs to allow students to co-write songs to sing about any topic in the curriculum. With school budgets leaner than ever, such programs have been drastically curtailed. Your tax-deductible donations can bring back these uplifting and sound pedagogical experiences.
Building a Safe Community
The powerful RAINBOW QUEST! board game teaches teens through adults LGBTQ+ history and culture while building a safe community and a better world for everyone. While the board game is a wonderful experience for players, we also understand the importance of song for a healthy life. To that end, we offer songwriting workshops led by nationally recognized and awarded musician, long-time arts education and diversity advocate, Martin Swinger. For over 30 years, Swinger has led songwriting workshops in elementary, middle, and high schools, at arts festivals, Civil Rights and Diversity trainings, music, and education conferences. Swinger’s tried-and-true mnemonic songwriting workshops utilize educational and social curriculum for the subject matter and the songwriting process is as inspiring and informative as it is fun. The resulting songs change minds and hearts and can be handed down through generations. If Martin is unavailable to personally lead your workshop, he will connect you with another capable singer-songwriter who will develop a plan to meet your needs.
Martin Swinger’s Songwriting Workshops
When was the last time your students demanded to review their lessons before going home? In Martin Swinger’s songwriting workshops, it happens all the time. Through discussion and brainstorming students create songs in their own words about Civil Rights, Respect, Bullying, Diversity, Safety, and the songs become empowering mantras for how to live together in a diverse community. By utilizing familiar melodies and the participants’ own words, all can participate in the process of songwriting and the song becomes their own.
Songs may be light-hearted, profound, attitude shifting, and life-changing. Take this kindergarten class’s response to visiting a nursing home as an example. The tune they chose is a familiar one – “The Wheels on the Bus.” The song they created is a heart-grabber:
“People in a nursing home wobble when they walk.
Some can’t hear, some can’t talk,
But if we hold their hand and listen when they talk
We all feel good.”
The students distilled their multisensory experience into the message that matters most: giving respect and attention to elders is rewarding for everyone.